Monday, December 31, 2012

2013 Predictions

- At least one country will leave the European Economic Comm.

- Oil and gas fracking will be outlawed by the E.P.A

- Jimmy Carter will attend Hugo Chavez’s funeral … or visa versa

- Massive student-loan meltdown ...  U.S. taxpayers foot the bill

- China will annex more territory … possibly part of Mongolia

- U.S. economy will fall into another recession

 - Iran and Egypt form a pan-Islamic alliance

- Hillary Clinton will not remember Benghazi in front of Congress

- Iran gets atom bomb … U.S. and Israel do nothing militarily

- It’s Denver vs. San Francisco in Super Bowl ... Denver wins

- Inflation finally bites … up 5%+

- At least one state will go bankrupt ... U.S. taxpayers foot the bill

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Subway Mayhem

To: Mayor Michael Bloomberg,

Yesterday, New York City had the second subway pushing death in so many weeks ... see: Earthlink Article.  We are singularly appalled that the authorities in this great city keep allowing such mayhem to continue to occur.  When will they remove these mechanized creatures-of-violence from roaming under the streets of the Big Apple?  Particularly those BMT behemoths ... the INDs and the IRTs, not so bad.  We also know that if the NYC Transportation Authority were to revert to the once popular horse-drawn carriages that this carnage would never have happened.

So what say you Mayor Bloomberg?  You have outlawed transfats, salt, and 16 oz.+ soft drinks.  Certainly you can rid your city of these killer subway trains.  With a stroke of your Mount Blanc pen, you can stop this carnage.  Pay no attention to that hate group, the Niggling Ridership Association (NRA), they just put their freedoms and convenience ahead of the lives of your citizenry.  Take back your city from those evil subterranean killing machines ... or, as we call them, "assault transports."  If you do, I think you can keep getting re-elected no matter what the City Charter says.  You will again be our super-hero!

Citizens Against Riders Protesting Every Recent Statute (CARPERS)

Disorder and Dreams in Zanzibar

[Created by yours truly using the template at:  Create Your Own Thomas Friedman Op-Ed Column ]

Last week’s events in Zanzibar were truly historic, although we may not know for years or even decades what their final meaning is. What’s important, however, is that we focus on what these events mean to the citizens themselves. The current administration seems too caught up in dissecting the macro-level situation to pay attention to the important effects on daily life. Just call it missing the desert for the sand..

When thinking about the recent turmoil, it’s important to remember three things: One, people don’t behave like migratory birds, so attempts to treat them as such inevitably look foolish. Migratory birds never suddenly shift their course in order to fit with a predetermined set of beliefs. Two, Zanzibar has spent decades being batted back and forth between colonial powers, so a mindset of peace and stability will seem foreign and strange. And three, hope is an extraordinarily powerful idea.

When I was in Zanzibar last August I was amazed by the level of Westernization for such a closed society, and that tells me two things. It tells me that the citizens of Zanzibar have no shortage of potential entrepreneurs, and that is a good beginning to grow from. Second, it tells me that people in Zanzibar are just like people anywhere else on this great globe of ours.

So what should we do about the chaos in Zanzibar? Well, it’s easier to start with what we should not do. We should not ignore the problem and pretend it will go away. Beyond that, we need to be careful to nurture these first inklings of a moderate, modern society. The opportunity is there, but I worry that the path to moderation is so strewn with obstacles that Zanzibar will have to move down it very slowly.

Speaking with a local farmer on the last day of my recent visit, I asked him if there was any message that he wanted me to carry back home with me. He pondered for a second, and then smiled and said, “Makuk yakuk sakuk,” which is a local saying that means roughly, “Every branch of the tree casts its own shadow.”

I don’t know what Zanzibar will be like a few years from now, but I do know that it will remain true to its cultural heritage, even if it looks very different from the country we see now. I know this because, through all the disorder, the people still haven’t lost sight of their dreams.

[And a tip of the hat to: Powerline Blog]

Thursday, December 27, 2012


Can you use an extra fifty thousand tax-free dollars?  Well our generous government has concocted a way for perspicacious individuals to claim such largess.  All you need to do is to get a “Love” form from the Department of Agriculture (USDA) within the next 88 days and, on it, claim that your deceased mother or grandmother or sister filed for a farm loan from this government agency in the 1990’s and was denied one because of her gender.  If you think I’m blowing smoke, see: The "Love" Program. And you need not worry about being thrown in the poky for concocting lies, you won’t.  Nobody will be investigated for mendacity in this program … it’s written into the law.  What you say is swallowed, er, accepted, as gospel.  So no need to fret.  Just spend a day spinning a good agrarian yarn and the government will reward you for your creative prose.

And, if you are lucky enough to have a black or Hispanic deceased close relative (or can make one up), you might also get an equal amount from the “Pigford” or “Garcia” programs also run out of the USDA.  Just think about that … $150,000 in Uncle Sam checks that are just waiting for you for the asking.  (And you wonder why we are running such monumental fiscal deficits?)

Then, when you get your check(s), all I ask is a 10% commission for this heads-up.  I think that's only fair.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Niqab Curtain

The Niqab Face-Veil

Now that Egypt is fully radicalized … given that the Muslim-Brotherhood’s rammed-through constitution has been “endorsed” by the people and signed into law by Egyptian President, Mohamed Morsi, it looks very much like this previous tourist attraction will cut itself off from the Western World and follow in the tracks of Iran back into the 8th century ... causing Israel (and the United States) fits over the coming years … see: Egypt's Constitution Becomes Law

Our current Administration (read Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama) not only did not resist this event, it is pretty clear that they helped bring it about.  There is a very interesting chronology of how this abetting took place in the following article … please read it in its entirety and don’t be surprised if a few scales fall from your eyes … see: Egypt's Avoidable Descent

To me the big question is … why?  Why would we create in Egypt the same kind of problems that we have been experiencing with Iran (and Syria) for more than 30 years?  Are we banging our heads against another wall only because the first one was so soft?  Are we allowing the Middle East to morph into one huge caliphate because it will benefit any of our foreign policy interests?  Hardly.

I can only come up with one admittedly far-fetched answer.  Hillary and Barack are joined at the hip over their deep-seated hatred of Israel.  They have both signaled this animus over and over again … yet it is continually papered over by most media outlets.  This hatred must be enormous for this daring-duo to allow what is clearly going to transpire over the coming decades when this caliphate is being formed … with one Muslim country after another being swept into the gravitational influence of this Sharia-law black hole.  Just as Churchill recognized in 1946 that an Iron Curtain was being pulled across Eastern Europe, so a niqab is now being drawn over the face of the Middle East.  And it's clearly very much a product of our current Administration's demented doing (just as the Iron Curtain was an outgrowth of FDR's failing health.)

Monday, December 24, 2012

The Eggnog Solution

The leader of the free world, a petulant Barack Obama, commenting on his and Congress’s  lack of a fiscal-cliff solution, said before he left for three weeks in Hawaii: “Everybody can cool off; everybody can drink some eggnog, have some Christmas cookies, sing some Christmas carols” … attend a luau … do some body surfing ...

Friday, December 21, 2012

Juxtaposition XXXIX

Monty Burns
California Gov. Moonbeam

It's the visage ... possibly even the disdain ...

Merry Christmas!

A Jolly Old Elf

Today we got a little coal in our stockings (going over the fiscal cliff), but we also were given one huge early present … the world does not seem to be ending as per the Mayan calendar.  Thank you Santa Claus!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Now they are both dead ... Robert Bork and Ted Kennedy ... so there is a certain metaphysical parity in my comments on how Robert Bork was denied his rightful seat on the Supreme Court by that bloated Massachusetts lowlife senator.  This "borking" of Robert Bork was pretty much all Ted Kennedy's doing ... one of the most shameful, mendacious and demagogic performances ever displayed on the Senate floor.  Shortly after Ronald Reagan nominated this great judicial scholar, Robert Bork, to don the black robes of the Supreme Court, Ted Kennedy publicly and gleefully maligned him with words so over-the-top slanderous that he should have be forced back into that worm hole in which he all too often resided.  Watch this nauseating performance at this: Huffington Post Video ... and, if you don't concur with my assessment of Ted Kennedy, then you are beyond all hope of civilized humanity.

"Lion of the Senate," my ass.  Ted Kennedy was a very small man.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

A Soap Opera

I know it is silly of me to write a blog calling out Hillary Clinton.  She, in the majority of Americans’s minds, can do no wrong.  (This is an enigma that continually has me baffled.)  But this woman’s performance surrounding the Benghazi affair has me tied in knots.  I don’t even think I have to recite her duplicity surrounding this matter.  I think that most Americans drawing in oxygen and expelling CO2, if they are willing to give it a few moments thought, know the game she is playing.  Yet they (you) are too wont to excuse her her transgressions whatever they may be.  The thing that causes my paroxysms is why the American public is so gullible?

She was more than willing to let Susan Wright take one fall for her … by sending her out in her stead on the talk show circuit that Sunday after the Benghazi attack.  And she has also concocted multiple excuses for her not testifying to Congress on this matter … including her busy schedule … her exhaustion dealing with these Middle East matters  … the need for her travel to Australia (to attend a wine tasting) … and her latest “concussion” excuse.  I have to believe that all her shenanigans in this matter are due to a transgression on her part so large that it might eliminate her from Presidential contention in 2016 … otherwise why would she be throwing up so much gorilla dust?

I can also conclude that another reason she is dragging things out until she is no longer Secretary of State is for obscure but vital legal reasons.  And, when she finally does appear before the House and the Senate to tell her side of things (probably well after the public has tired of this matter), her concussion will then be called on to performed double duty … in that many of the details of this matter will have been erased from her memory.  (She did play much this same trump card in the Whitewater hearings almost twenty years ago.)  This is a soap opera playing out in front of a very gullible American public … and many of those of you who are, in fact, smart enough to see through her charades will, nevertheless, admire her for her cunning … and still stand by her.

But not this commentator ... like a soap opera, I have experienced this script too many times before.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Assault Weapons

Bushmaster .223

As a result of the horror that transpired last Friday in Newtown, Connecticut (see: Huffington Post) Congress will very likely re-institute the assault weapons ban that expired in 2004 … plus a few other palliative measures.  Will this stop such senseless violence?  Unlikely … certainly not the mayhem in the gangland battlegrounds like the south side of Chicago where dozens of teenagers die each week.  Even Connecticut currently has a state-wide ban on assault weapons.  This clearly did not stop Adam Lanza from his twisted vengeance.

But our short-sighted Washington solons will adjourn sometime in January after having put a plaster on the gaping wound of such insanity.  What they likely won’t address are:

-         the culture of extreme violence that pervades Hollywood, the U.S. computer-gaming industry, and all too much of our television programming
-         our country’s turning its back on our need for more mental-health institutions and a reasonable process for keeping our society’s blatantly-psychotic misfits from walking among us.  The notion that every weirdo needs to be “main-streamed” is a sick societal construct that is supported by … and supports the fringes of the  legal profession.  Nonsense!
-         a serious investigation into the effects of many of our psychiatric drugs on large populations of our male teenagers … particularly when dosages are varied or abandoned.  (I happen to believe this well could be the primary reason for the outbreaks of these teenage killings.  To me, there seems a correlation between the hyperbolic increased in the use of such drugs and these Columbine-type events.)

And lastly ... almost as an aside, I fully support the use of drone air-strikes on the hideouts of Muslim terrorists … who too often insinuate themselves among civilians … often resulting in the incidential killing of innocent young children.  With this, I wonder if President Obama thought of the tots that he has killed by proxy when he shed a tear for the youngsters massacred in Newtown, Connecticut?  Life is full of such enigmatic ironies.

Friday, December 14, 2012

The Cover-up

Representative Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) is complaining that he is being denied access to the survivors of the terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya on this past September 11th ... in which four Americans died, including our Ambassador (see: Breitbart Story ).  He can’t even get the survivors’s names … or know exactly how many there were.  How can this be?  How can the complete story of what happened in Benghazi come out if our government is managing the news of this event so closely … even to the point of keep the survivors incognito for over three months?  We are obviously violating at least two fundamental rights of these survivors … to be known and to tell what they know?

There is only one easy answer to these questions.  There are things that must have occurred that night in Benghazi that are so embarrassing to this Administration that they need to squash the facts and any access to these facts.  In truth, even Susan Rice’s withdrawal from consideration as Secretary of State is probably part of this cover-up.  If Ambassador Rice were to be closely interrogated about Benghazi as part of her confirmation process, incriminating facts were very likely to have come out … which might open up new avenues of Congressional inquiry … and maybe even investigative reporting (gasp!.)  An insidious quilt of secrecy is being pulled over this Benghazi event which should be anathema to any clear-thinking American.

And, from what we learned about what happened to Nixon during Watergate, it’s not the crime that is so damaging … it is the cover-up.  And, like what happened in the early 1970’s, it may take a few years, but the public will eventually find out the truth.  And, considering the frantic efforts currently being made to thwart this investigation, I think the truth will likely be very devastating.

Thursday, December 13, 2012


Sigmund Freud identified an interesting twist in the spectrum of human emotions which he labeled “transference.”  This was the tendency of those being psychoanalyzed to view their psychoanalysts as all-knowing and all-seeing … and thus an object of veneration (frequently falling in love with them.)

Siggy baby had it right … but he didn’t nearly go far enough.  It seems that our society today engages in a wide variety of illogical transference-like emotions.  We view successful investors (such as Warren Buffet) as super-experts in taxing policy.  We view movie stars (such as Sean Penn) as super-experts on international relations.  We view pop singers (such as  Madonna) as super-experts on child-raising.  We view comedians (such as Jon Stewart) as super-experts in news commentary.  We view the spouses of legislators (such as Clair McCaskill) as super-experts on law-making. 

And we view consummate politicians (you pick your favorite) as super-experts in governance.  (I guess I have also to add that we view successful venture capitalists as super-experts in politics.)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Zabar's ...

One of the most expensive delicatessens in New York City ... chock-a-block full of gourmet items ... now accepts EBT cards.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The Christmas-Tree Angel

This is a story about how an angel came to be traditionally on top of a Christmas tree.

It seems that many years ago Santa came down with a serious case of the croup a few weeks before Christmas and Mrs. Claus had to minister to his illness.  She was up and down the steps all day with hot chicken soup, orange juice, and NyQuil.

Then two weeks before Christmas Santa's elves went on strike demanding time-and-a-half pay for weekend and evening work.  So Mrs. Claus, when she was not up and down the stairs with the hot soup, was out in the workshop putting the finishing touches on all the children's toys.

Then a week before Christmas Santa’s reindeer all got the trots.  So Mrs. Claus, when she was not up and down the stairs with the hot soup and out in the workshop putting the finishing touches on all the toys, was in the stable changing the reindeer's bedding straw and giving them Kaopectate.

Finally Christmas Eve came and Santa was up on wobbly legs, the elves had packed up the toys under binding arbitration, and the reindeer were sufficiently recovered to perform their annual flight.  Santa’s sleigh was piled high with his goodies for all the children of the world.  Santa got into his sleigh, gave his team a whistle, and they were off at last.

Mrs. Claus went back into the house and, with a deep sigh, sank into Santa’s big easy chair by the roaring fire.  Just then there came a tiny knock at the front door.  Grumpily, Mrs. Claus left her soft chair to go see what new trouble had befallen her.  When she opened the door, there was standing the most beautiful little angel holding a lovely Christmas tree she had brought for the Claus’s.

She sweetly said to the scowling Mrs. Claus, “I have brought you your Christmas tree.  Where would you like me to put it?”

Monday, December 10, 2012

Pact with the Devil

David Ignatius, columnist for the Washington Post, does not head my list of favorite people, but he recently wrote an op-ed which goes as far as he is allowed to go to take the Obama administration to task.  Please read the whole thing and then return for my vinegar: Washington Post - Ignatius.

Comparing the United States’s reaction to the Egyptian riots that ousted Hosni Murabak and the recent ones over Egypt’s current President, Mohamed Morsi’s overreach, one can readily see that the Obama/Clinton tag team have made a pact with the devil, the Muslim Brotherhood.  Shortly after Obama’s first inauguration, he met, sub rosa, with the Muslim Brotherhood where who-knows-what transpired (see: Washington Times Article) … and numerous times since.  But, as a result, we can clearly see the Obama Administration’s tilt toward this radical (my term) Muslim group … including its backing of the Arab Spring and our numerous faulty diplomatic Middle-East moves thereafter … including the Benghazi attack and its cover-up.

Shortly after Morsi helped to stop the recent rocket attacks on Israel from the Gaza Strip (which he previously probably abetted), he must have felt he had the leverage and quickly assumed Pharaoh-like powers in Egypt.  This caused an eruption of Egyptian secularists on the streets of Cairo … to which Obama and Hillary managed to look the other way.  Yes, they may have contacted Morsi in private to cajole him, but they took no strong public stance against such Morsi totalitarianism, like they did with Murabak.  This would have sent a clear message to the Arab street that the U.S. backed true Democracy, not autocratic rule.  This also tells me nothing more than there must be a secret understanding between Morsi and Obama that we are still reluctant to abandon.

Unlike the classic Faustian bargain, I doubt if Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton are willing or even able to turn the tables on this Mephistopheles.

Saturday, December 08, 2012

On the Ninth Day of Christmas

The world will come to an end.  That is, if you start counting the days of Christmas from the Advent (December 13th).  So the ninth day in this sequence is December 21st or our winter Solstice … which also just happens to be the last day of the Mayan long calendar  … see Telegraph Story ... which you also need to swallow.  Many doomsday believers do think that the Mayans knew much more than we ... and that this coming 12/21/12 will usher in the Apocalypse.  To me the fascinating aspect of the Mayan calendar was that it took into account where our solar system was relative to the Milky Way galaxy … see: Mayan Calculations … not that they necessarily knew that one was part of the other.  Fascinating stuff!.

And we are worrying about the fiscal cliff and why are these nine ladies dancing?  Poof, poof piffle!

Friday, December 07, 2012

Treadmill to Oblivion

If Michelle Obama decides to run for the Senate from Illinois in 2016, she is already ahead in the polls and would likely win, see NBC Story … to serve under the two terms of President Hillary Clinton (2016-2024).  At which point she could then, in turn, run for the Presidency herself … and would likely win her decreed two terms (2024-2032).  Then to be followed by Chelsea Clinton (2032-2040) ... (why not, the Bush's did it) ... and then Malia Obama (2040-2048).

We would then clearly be on a treadmill to oblivion … and thank the Lord (or Allah) that I would no longer be around to suffer the consequences of our lapsing into such a succession of royalty

Thursday, December 06, 2012

The Payoff

Joe Scarborough keeps asking the same question on his Morning Joe show.  How will Obama’s raising the tax rate on the upper 2% of income earners generate any significant amount of revenue?  Were this to happen … Warren Buffet won’t be paying any more taxes.  Michael Moore won’t be paying any more taxes. Harvey Weinstein won’t be paying any more taxes.  Jon Corzine won’t be paying any more taxes.  Hedge fund managers won’t be paying any more taxes.  Anyone who earns money from dividends or capital gains … or those who can afford a good tax attorney won’t be paying any more taxes under Obama’s scheme. 

Do you find it strange that these people are also the ones who have been the big fund raisers for Obama?  So Obama, by being so fiercely adamant in his fiscal-cliff solution, can let his plutocrat friends off the hook while, at the same time, appear to be appeasing the Wall-Street Occupiers.  The people who will be paying more taxes will be those schlemiels who earn $250,000 to $500,000 per year in ordinary income and don’t have any significant offsets.  They are the ones who will be taking in the shorts.  And they are the ones, as the small business owners, who are said to be the major job creators in the country.

On the other hand, how might Obama go after the real millionaires and billionaires?  He could limit total deductions and other income-tax offsets to something like $35,000 or $50,000 or $75,000 … just like what Mitt Romney had proposed in the Presidential debates … and like what the Republicans are currently offering in the fiscal-cliff discussions.  Under this methodology Warren Buffet, Michael Moore, Harvey Weinstein, Jon Corzine, hedge fund managers, and their ilk would be the ones taking in the shorts … instead of the small-business job creators.  And, using this methodology, raising $800 billion in taxes (or much more depending on the limit put on deductions) over ten years would be a piece of cake. 

Therefore, one could reasonably conclude that The Barry’s insistence on just raising taxes-rates on the 2%-ers is really, in truth, a sly payoff to his benefactors by our consummate demagogue-in-chief.

Postscripts:  Please don't assume that, by my not mentioning spending and entitlement cuts, I do not favor them.  I do.  I think they are a must and the ratio of government spending cuts to revenue additions should be at least 6:1.  Also don't infer from the above that I would like to increase the tax rates on dividends and capital gains.  I don't ... however I would be in favor of eliminating the "carried interest" tax loophole that hedge fund managers enjoy.  It is a distasteful  taxing gimmick and it would be a tragedy if this carried-interest tax avoidance loophole was the reason taxes went up on actual capital gains and dividends. 

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Wagyu Beef

China has just surpassed the United States in the volume of its foreign trade; it has the world’s second largest GNP … and is expected to surpass the U.S. in this decade; the U.S. owes China over one trillion dollars … with billions more to come; and now it has outshone Uncle Sam on one more front … humility.  The Chinese have now decreed that ostentatious displays of power and privilege for the ruling classes are now forbidden … and that the nation’s media need no longer fawn at the feet of the plutocrats.  See:  Telegraph Article.  Wow!  Double wow!!

I just wrote a blog entry on how our White House has erected 54 Christmas trees (see: Oh Oh Tannenbaum) and it was recently revealed that U.S. taxpayers spent $1.4 billion last year on the trappings of our President and his family.  Moreover our national media and East/West Coast glitterati can’t lavish praise enough on our current leadership.  I guess if Barack Obama really want’s to go down in history as another Abe Lincoln, he needs to take a lesson from the Chinese … and lay off the wagyu beef ...

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Stitches on the Fast Ball

The Boston Red Sox are about to acquire  Frank Napoli, 31, from the Texas Rangers on a three-year contract totaling $39 million ... that's $13 million a year for a catcher/1st baseman in the twilight of his career whose batting average last year over 100 games was only .227 ... wow is that squishy!  OK, so he also hit 24 homers, but only had 56 RBIs ... just another utility player (in my opinion ... see: Bloomberg Story) of which the Red Sox are currently overloaded.

The economics of playing baseball sure have changed since the days of Curt Flood and the introduction of free agency.  As a result, if a dad wants to take his wife and two children to a major league game in a big city ... like Boston ... he has to be prepared to shell out at least $400 easily.  Insanity!  So, you fathers of young boys, forget about computer science, engineering, and medical school.   Instead, teach well you sons how to read the stitches on the fast ball (or recite glibly from a teleprompter.).

Monday, December 03, 2012

Oh Oh Tannenbaums

After Ebenezer Scrooge’s ghostly visits on Christmas eve, he changed his miserly ways and was know thereafter to ”keep Christmas very well.”  Well Michelle Obama has not had any poltergeists banging around the White House (that I know of), yet she keeps Christmas exceeding well.  One would think that having two or three Christmas trees in the White House would be quite enough … particularly since the Obamas will be vacationing in Kailua/Kona, Hawaii for the three weeks surrounding Christmas and New Years (at a cost of four million taxpayer dollars … see. Washington Times Article).  But, in the typical over-the-top Michelle style, she has had erected there six times that many ... 18 Christmas trees.  Wow!  Oops, I lied.  It’s not even 18 trees.  Its even three times that many still.  It’s 54 Christmas trees gracing the White House! 

54!  Where the hell can you put that many tannenbaums in the White House?  One in the Oval Office, one in the Blue Room,. one in the Red Room,  one in the personal quarters … make it two,  one in the dining room,  one in the entry hall, one in the kitchen for the kitchen staff, and one under the portico.  Let’s see … that’s nine altogether … which are still 1/6th of the number that are actually gracing this First Family’s residence during the time of our nation’s economic austerity and malaise … see: and check out its picture of a few of the White House trees.   

But then one has to keep up appearances for the other 98% …

Sunday, December 02, 2012


Foreign Policy magazine is respected as one of the premier sources for what is happening in international affairs.  It has just published a detailed account of  the Obama administration's position vis-a-vis Iranian sanctions ... and it is not pretty.  Please read it here and then return for a few comments from your blogger.

As you read, the Senate just passed an amendment to a National Defense Authorization Act with a 94-0 vote ... that imposes a series of harsher sanctions on Iran.  Democrat Senator Menendez of New Jersey, one sponsor of this amendment says, "The window is closing.  The time for the waiting game is over."  Yet our administration is opposed to these new sanctions based upon administrivia ... in other words, it continues to pussyfoot around in its dealings with Iran and the "existential threat"  posed by its nuclear ambitions.

What is, to me, more damaging in this article is that it also explains that the tough sanctions that were imposed on Iran last year (and which were bragged about by Obama in his debate with Romney)  grew out of another Senate action which was passed 100-0 and which this administration also opposed with equally appeasing language  Please reread the last paragraph in this article for more insight into what possibly is the real position of Barack Obama/Hillary Clinton on Iran.  To me it is obvious that, despite their rhetoric, they would not be unhappy when Iran finally acquires the bomb.  This is something that has been obvious to me for a long time.

One final thought -- last year the Senate vote for tougher sanctions was 100-0.   This year, the vote was 94-0.  I wonder if the six Senators who sat out this year's vote somehow are vying for the Secretary of State position?

Friday, November 30, 2012


No, this blog entry isn’t about Cliff Clavin … you know that obnoxious know-it-all from the Cheers TV series.  It’s again about the fiscal cliff and some more thoughts from another know-it-all, me.  I have previously indicated that I thought that going over the fiscal cliff might be a good idea (see: The Fiscal Cliff).  To me, this event seems increasingly likely … and my previous rational for accepting this outcome was based upon the notion that this might be the only way that the Republicans could force discretionary spending and entitlement cuts on the Democrat administration … none of which, it now appears, President Obama is willing to propose ... let alone implement.

Yes, the Republicans are likely to be blamed for the consequences of this event … and the Democrats are also likely immediately to propose legislation to cut tax rates for those making less than $250,000 ... which would then partially obviate the tax increases that just occurred.  How does this play out?  I suggest the following strategy for the Republicans:

1)      Once the fiscal cliff occurs, go along with the Democrats and vote for the new Bush-style tax-rate cuts on 98% of the American public … particularly if they are to be made permanent.  This way Republicans can stay true to their pledges of never increasing tax rates ... yet garner some gratitude of the middle class.  (The tax increases for the upper 2% would have occurred without their assent ... as part of the fiscal cliff plunge.)  This middle-class tax-cut passage might also remove some of the sting of the expected ensuing economic slow-down.  If and when this occurs, the Republicans can point to the increased taxes on small businesses as the culprit. 
2)      President Obama will have gotten what he wanted on the revenue side and thus a lot of air will have gone out of his rhetorical balloon.  Of course he will then be forced to govern under enormously reduced discretionary and entitlement spending … a good thing.  The Republicans, having given up on revenue increases, may well have the upper hand politically in restoring any truly-needed government spending … particularly for the military.
3)      There might be … just might be … somewhat of a thawing of relations between Obama and Congress and, as a consequence, there could then be progress on the serious issues of fixing the flaws in Obamacare and slowing much of Obama’s “progressive” agenda.  (Nah, this is just wishful thinking.)

So, Republicans be not afraid of this fiscal cliff.  It just may be that you can win by losing.

The Sphinx

Just as the Obama administration stayed mute during the Iranian uprising in 2010 (see:New York Times Article) and, consequently, lost major leverage in its stated opposition to Iran’s developing nuclear weapons; it is again playing the silent Sphinx during the current uprising in Egypt where moderates and Coptic Christians are protesting the creation of another Iran-like caliphate there (see: Associated Press Article).  Contrast the White House's current silence with its megaphoning when the mobs were calling for former Egyptian President, Hosni Murabak's head.  Insiders (who seem to know)  are predicting that these newest protests will go nowhere and, before the Nile again floods in the Spring, Egypt will fade behind a radical-Islamic curtain. 

Although Administration apologists keep the narrative going that Mohammed Morsi, President of Egypt, really won’t effectively make the Muslim Brotherhood Egypt’s neo-Pharaohs, it is pretty clear to this author that our media are smoking hookahs … and, in very short order, Egypt will be even more despotic than it was under Murabak.  The only difference is that, now, Egypt will no longer be even a titular ally of the United States … and will be working diligently behind the scenes to destroy Israel.  This is clearly a foreign-policy catastrophe … and, to me, is another major blot on Hillary Clinton’s tenure as Secretary of State (others … Syria, Benghazi, Afghanistan, North Korea, Iran, Israel, Mali, Russia, the Eurozone, etc.).  Yet, Hillary is as popular or more popular than ever … and is quite often predicted to be our next President.  Aargh!

Afterward: there are also rumors that, once this caliphate is established in Egypt, the Spinx will be blown up by the Muslim Brotherhood ... much like the historic huge standing Buddha was blown up by the Taliban in Afghanistan a decade or so ago.

The Money Hole

Anyone who is looking, has seen this one coming;  It is increasingly likely that the Federal Government (read, the U.S. taxpayer) will shoulder the additional burden of defaulting student loans.  According to Citigroup: 
America’s now-nationalized student loan industry just reached a value of $1 trillion,  growing at a 20 percent-per-year pace. Since President Obama nationalized the industry (a tacked-on provision of the Obamacare bill), tuition has gone up 25 percent and the three-year default rate is at a record 13.4 percent.
See this disturbing story at: Kudlow Interview  The amount of student loans currently in default is $74 billion.  Were our President, in his increasingly autocratic role, to forgive this total indebtedness, he would further ingratiate himself to young voters with this fiscal slight-of-hand … since such debt really doesn’t disappear.  It just changes hands … and makes it even more likely that the United States will eventually disappear down the money hole of unsustainable federal debts … something for which our higher educational system has not prepared our young’ins.

Thursday, November 29, 2012


Chrome Logo
Turn around is fair play.  Microsoft killed Netscape with its Internet Explorer via software integration and predatory pricing.  Now Google is attacking Internet Explorer with its Chrome browser.  Let me explain … somehow I inadvertently downloaded Google’s Chrome (software vendors have gotten very clever at such subterfuge.)  After about six months I was tired of seeing this unused Chrome icon on my start-up screen … so I uninstalled it. Big mistake!  For weeks thereafter my Internet Explorer operated very poorly.  It downloaded slowly … it was missing many graphic images … and it often, too often, froze to the point where I had to restart the computer.

This was extremely frustrating.  I ran and reran my antivirus software.  I ran and reran my registry cleanup software.  I ran and reran my file trimming software.  I defragged my hard disc … twice.  Then it dawned on me … these problems all started when I uninstalled Chrome.  So I reinstalled it … and, voila, things are now great … as long as I use Chrome as my primary PC browser.  Clearly Google has advertently or inadvertently structured Chrome with hidden I.E.D.s vis-à-vis Microsoft’s Internet Explorer.  Chrome is obviously Google's primary combatant in the ongoing cyberwars to take over the PC interface. 

How is it going?  Google allows me statistics about what browsers are being used to reference this blog … with hits running close to 3,000 per month.  Recently, these numbers show this usage profile: Firefox – 37%, Internet Explorer – 24%, Chrome – 21%, etc.  So, Google seems to be effectively insinuating itself into PC interfaces around the world

But then who are among the real battlefield causalities? ... schlemiels like me.  I just wish I had some recourse against software vendors such as Google … and Microsoft too.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

For the Want of a Nail

Why did Mitt Romney lose an election which most pundits thought he was sure to win (including myself … a non- pundit). Other than the voting loyalty of obvious major blocs that worshiped at the feet of Obama -- single women, Hispanics and blacks, Romney may well of lost because his team could not get out the vote. In fact in 2012, the Romney/Ryan ticket received 464 thousand fewer votes than the McCain/Palin ticket did in 2008. This was a shocker to me … particularly given the surge that Romney and Ryan seemed to be receiving in the waning days of the campaign.

When you couple this with another surprising statistic – the Obama/Biden ticket got almost 6.3 million fewer votes than they did in 2008, one is even more perplexed. Obviously something was seriously wrong with both candidates’s ground games, but Romney had an opening through which he could have driven an American Motors car … and he flubbed the dub. If he just could have picked up half the votes that Obama surrendered, he might well have been elected. But alas, not to be.

The question then is, what happened? And I think I have a little-reported answer. The Romney/Ryan team was depending on a piece of software dubbed ORCA to get out those voters that were expected to and should have pulled the Republican levers. This software was supposed to identify for more than 34,000 eager Romney poll-watchers specific names of those voters in key districts who needed to be rounded up and brought to the polls. However, this lauded software pooped the bed and did not perform as anticipated. And what is worse, the Romney team had no back-up plan … so perhaps millions of their expected Republican voters stayed home and watched the sad results on television … see: National Journal Article

Exactly why this software crashed to the point of non-functionality on election day is probably now being hotly debated … lack of beta testing, lack of user training, insufficient computer power, a denial-of-service attack from the Obama team, a Democrat techie mole, etc.; but what is clear is that Romney, despite his reputation for getting things done, did not have the right techies and technical managers on his campaign staff. See: SD Times Article for additional details. Too bad … for all Romney’s psychic and organizational efforts and the hundreds of millions of dollars that were expended on his behalf … the lack of this one I.P. nail may well have cost him the election battle.

Monday, November 26, 2012

One Man, One Vote

Breitbart carries a story of how the mentally disabled are voting for Democrats in great numbers as a result of semi-fraudulent activities at their group homes, see: Breitbart Story. This scheme is well known to me … for I used to help my Down Syndrome brother-in-law vote for Republicans … to the seething outrage of my liberal friends. I registered him (with his “X”) and went into the voting booth with him to show him how and for whom to vote. Even though I disapprove of this process, I did this primarily to exhibit the ludicrousness of this cornerstone of the liberal voting agenda --- “one man, one vote.”

Every warm body over the age of eighteen SHOULD NOT VOTE. The fact that one political party can organize large numbers of mentally-disabled or non compos mentis people into doing something of which they have no understanding is clearly not just undemocratic … it is immoral. Because those in the wagon have much more free time than those pulling the wagon, this gives them the opportunity to load more of the fringes of our society into the wagon … and will eventually lead to those of us pulling the wagon to be unable to continue.

How to fix things? Number one, anybody who cannot read and understand a simple English paragraph should not be given a ballot. Number two, all voters should have some valid form of picture identification proving their citizenship. Number three, there should not be any method of proxy voting which cannot be unambiguously tracked back to an individual citizen. Number four, all voters must go into the voting booth and vote alone … no helpers permitted.

Will this make voting more difficult? Possibly at the margin it will, but we have too long been permissively expanding the opportunities for voter fraud which is clearly not democratic.  And we need to stop using that phony liberal shibboleth, “one man, one vote.”

Friday, November 23, 2012

Tums for the Tummy

Democracy … that was the byword when the United States (read Hillary and Barack) backed the notion of the “Arab Spring” … which so far has brought them nothing but headaches – the four murders in Benghazi, the storming of the U.S.’s Cairo embassy, the Hamas rocket attacks on Israel, the al Qaeda resurgence in Mali, and now Egypt’s President, Mohammed Morsi, assuming the role of a dictator (see: CBS News Story). Yes, there were “democratic” elections in Egypt after Hosni Mubarak was tossed out  … which the Muslim Brotherhood won. But, since then, there has been a steady deterioration of Egypt’s democratic governance and cooperation with the United States … to the point were our President can’t even call Egypt an ally.

Yes, there has been something of a détente recently when Egypt interceded in the Hamas rocket attacks on Israel from Gaza. But any clear-thinking person knows that this will be a short-lived truce. Even Obama’s former Special Envoy to the Mid East, George Mitchell, has said that the U.S. should not be rewarding bad behavior on the part of the extremists.  However, rewarding them we are (by negotiating with and thus recognizing Hamas).  But Hillary Clinton has seized on this moment, I believe, to try to change the subject away from her problems in Libya. And it will take months, if not years, before we know the full extent of what she has promised them in exchange for what I’m sure will be more Morsi duplicity. Hillary clearly does not believe that old adage that “when you lie down with dogs, you end up with fleas” … but rumor has it that Bubba Clinton has just ordered a gross of “Frontline” ampules.

Now the Egyptians are again demonstrating for the freedoms that they thought they were getting when Morsi was elected … but, alas, it is not to be … probably not for many years to come ... if ever. It appears that the one of the world’s oldest civilizations, the Egyptians, have traded a headache for an upset stomach. As part of the deal, could Hillary have promised them a shipload of Tums?

Afterward:  I got the following list of powers that Morsi granted himself from an AP story:

"— All laws and decisions by the president are final, cannot be appealed, overturned or halted by the courts or other bodies. This applies to decisions he has made since taking office in June and any he makes until a new constitution is approved and a new parliament is elected, expected in the spring at the earliest.

— No judicial body can dissolve the upper house of parliament or the assembly writing the new constitution. Both are dominated by the Brotherhood and other Islamists and several cases demanding their disbanding were before the courts, which previously dissolved the lower house of parliament.

— The president can take any steps or measures necessary to prevent threats to "the revolution, the life of the nation or national unity and security" or to the functioning of state institutions.

— A new judiciary body of "protection of the revolution" is created to reopen investigations, prosecutions and trials of former regime officials, including ousted President Hosni Mubarak, for the killing of protesters during last year's uprising. Other police officers accused of killings, however, will not be retried.

— The controversial prosecutor general, a Mubarak appointee seen by many as lax in pursuing former regime figures, was removed from his post."

Does anyone hear the sound of crickets coming from our White House?